When Shaftesbury commissioned Buckley Gray Yeoman to design 32,000 sq ft of retail and 13,500 sq ft of restaurants at the Newport Sandringham Building (spanning the block between Newport Place and Charing Cross Road), it needed a strong set of CGIs to support Siren Design’s new brand. We were commissioned to produce images of different sections of the 100 metres of prime retail which wrapped around the block from Chinatown’s gateway out along Charing Cross Road.
A modern and sophisticated facade with very complex articulation, embossing and perforation, along with the need for the images to have people integrated for vibrancy and activation, gave us a challenge to relish. High resolution photography was taken for the elements that were to be retained at upper levels. A significant amount of photo retouch was then needed to remove the scruff, and bring the photography up to marketing standard.
Using reference photography of some of the pre-construction mock ups along with DWGs of the patternation, we attempted to use high resolution displacement maps to replicate the embossed column and etched canopy details in 3D. We failed to get the requisite level of refinement through displacement, so painstakingly modelled the intricate motif work, taking care to feather the pattern across the length of the columns. To populate the images we used a combination of people shot on sight, and people shot sympathetically in our studio using lighting rigs and digital masking techniques.
10 images and several vignettes were delivered for the project, each capturing a different perspective of the scheme. Showcasing the rich cultural tapestry to aspiring retailers and restaurateurs, thus keeping Chinatown one of the capitals favourite destinations.